BootVision: Optimizing car immobilization

Our client: Risetek

Risetek Global is a New York-based company that operates in the vehicle immobilization industry. They aim to improve the performance of booting programs thanks to the patented state-of-the-art hardware and software platform solution we created: BootVision.

Industry

Logistics

Overview

The process of booting vehicles is complex and time-consuming, so we created BootVision, a platform that allowed Risetek to automate the whole process, offer 24/7 customer support, and get constant reports to identify better insights. BootVision allowed Risetek to increase efficiencies, simplify operations and significantly improve customer satisfaction.

The Project

We conceived, designed, and developed BootVision, a platform that revolutionizes vehicle immobilizations, the act of placing a wheel clamp (boot) on a car to inhibit its ability to move until the owner settles up fines and fees with an entity. BootVision resolves the whole flow — From field agents booting cars procedures, to customers paying and releasing boots, customer representatives assistance system, reporting, and much more.

Getting your car booted is very stressful, without even mentioning all the tedious and time-consuming bureaucratic steps must follow to unlock your vehicle. Moreover, the process from Risetek’s side was old-fashioned and ineficient. Thus, we created BootVision to optimize this whole process and improve the experience for both, Risetek and people going through the boot release process.

In a nutshell, BootVision allows Risetek and its staff to be more efficient and effective by automating operations, gaining flexibility, and getting reports that are crucial for improving their service. On top of that, BootVision allows Risetek to onboard new operations in other cities and universities within just minutes and without depending on a dev team. On the other hand, BootVision offers an unprecedented process in which vehicle owners can complete the boot release by themselves within just minutes following some simple and automated steps. Indeed, vehicle owners can pay, release and return the boot on their own. BootVision clearly brings in uncountable benefits for all involved parts. Let’s see how we took up the project, from ideation to launch.

Process & Workflow

Light-it was involved in the project from beginning to end. The team was made up of a Project Manager, a Technical Leader, two Software Engineers, one UX/UI Designer, and a QA Engineer.

Product strategy

The first step of the process was defining what type of solution suited Risetek’s business and its users best. The input we had was a fully detailed list of requirements, and a demo of the old software they built in 1997, and the opportunity to do user interviews and research. We carried out a product strategy workshop, which involves two main edges: product and technical discovery.

Product Discovery is the process of figuring out what is the right product to build for the specific problem, users, and context. Our team worked side-by-side with Risetek’s to fully understand their needs and wants, how their business operates, the industry, customers, and users. Only after this we started thinking on how the ideal solution would look like and what features it should involve.

The Technical Discovery consisted of evaluating the technical feasibility and roadmap for BootVision. During this process, we defined the technical blueprint and tech stack for the project.

At this point, we got to define the MVP, a roadmap to achieve it, a first draft of the platform’s user flows, and a high-level diagram of its architecture.

Product Design

Product design is about putting the users at the center of the design process and getting the MVP down to earth. BootVision is a large system that encompasses several user types doing various tasks. The challenge here was building a platform that was highly usable and practical for all of them:

  • Field Agents
  • Call Center
  • Managers
  • Owner of the car
  • Towing Agents

We designed iteratively, beginning with BootVision’s user flows, to then design wireframes, and mockups, until we had a full prototype of the product, ready for development.

Figma Logo Figma

Product Development

BootVision’s focus was on scalability and consistency. Overall, the product development process took nine months, and the process was broken into two-week sprints. The stack of technologies used was:

Figma Logo Laravel
Figma Logo React.js
Figma Logo C#
Figma Logo PostgreSQL
Figma Logo Redis

Due to its nature, the system had to adapt to operations localized in different cities across the US. Although these operations maintain the same central case flow, they all have variables that differentiate them significantly from one another. To achieve a scalable, extensible, and simple system, a wide range of design patterns was utilized, resulting in an easily evolvable product that effortlessly adapts to new requirements with little technical cost.

The final platform

Risetek counted with an LPR system that allows cars that drive through the city with a radar to scan license plates and get a notification when they pass by a vehicle that might be a candidate to boot.

To leverage the rest of the process, we developed:

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Field Agents

The field agents examine those license plates to validate if they should be booted or not. They follow a specific process that evaluates diverse parameters such as how much money they owe, how they got the infraction, when, and more.

If they confirm the vehicle should be booted, they follow the steps to register it in the platform (enter the license plate with a picture, indicate which boot was used in that car, etc.).

In the last step, the field agents automatically print a paper with a QR and link, which then is left in the booted car´s window.

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CSR Portal

This portal allows:

  • Call centers to offer 24/7 customer care availability. Here, the user who got his car booted can ask all his questions and make claims as efficiently as possible.
  • Managers to control the variables of the system. Here they can manage the boots, manage the drop-off locations, reports, inventory, user management, and more.

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Towing component

If the user does not take off the boot before the first 24 hours, a tow takes the car. Here, they log in to the platform to register when the towing was done, which cars are still pending, and more.

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Customer portal

The user that got its car booted can pay its debts through this portal. Once he notices his car has been booted, he will find a QR or Link in his window. The users scan it and enter the customer portal immediately. Here, all the details are provided, and he can choose different ways of payment and two alternatives to take off the boot:

Self Release
The user can take the boot by himself. This is the quickest and cheapest way of doing it, and they need to follow the instructions and tutorial videos presented on the platform. They even count with all the Drop Off Locations to leave the boot and notice where the closest one to the car is.

Assistance Release
The user gets a text notifying that an agent is going to their car to take off the boot in a few minutes.

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Drop off user Portal

When the users deliver the boots in the drop-off location of convenience, they check-in the boot by scanning it, so that the company can keep track on where the boots are and improve operations. Once this is done, the case is finished.

Challenges

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Growing Operations

Every time Risetek started to work in a new operation (a city or a University), the platform had to be modified, which took a lot of time and was a large cost confronted by both Risetek and the enforcement systems. We finally came up with a solution in which opening a new operation takes minutes and can be handled without development. Now, it just takes to adjust the corresponding variables and the system will create a new version of itself, customized to the new operation’s requirements. There is no need to assume high costs of developing new versions; it's dynamic.

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Compatibility

BootVision had to be integrated and synchronized with legacy enforcement platforms, which are the systems that provide us with the citations a license plate has.

Our system enables smooth integrations with enforcement systems disregarding the communication protocol used by them – REST, SOAP, SFTP, or others.

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User Experience

We’re dealing with different user profiles using BootVision for different matters. We had to focus a lot on understanding and empathizing with all of them to create flows and features that make them be more efficient, benefiting Risetek. With user research and a user-centric approach we got to a solution that helps everyone achieve their goals in a much smoother way. For example, call center agents can find information on the drivers 130% faster than before, and field agents can boot 30% more cars thanks to the platform.

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